by: Sharron Senter
#1 – Summer Computer Travel
Holiday travelers should be on alert when arriving home from long weekends, such as the Fourth of July, a popular time for computer viruses to spread.
Most computer users have a tendency to turn off their computers when away on trips, which means you’re not getting newly-released anti-virus patches or anti-spyware updates; the two most common areas that cause computers problems. We recommend you update anti-virus and anti-spyware scans before opening e-mail or going online after an extended absence.
We consistently see an increase in calls for virus related problems immediately following long weekends. Avoid the problems altogether by updating your security software before using your computer. For a free listing of viruses, spyware threats and trends, visit: www.VisitingGeeks.com/downloads.htm
#2 -- Should You Leave Your Computer Running?
One question we hear frequently is, "Should I leave my desktop computer on or turn it off?"
There are 2 schools of thought…
Turning it on and off numerous times during the day subjects the microcircuits to flexing and fatigue due to change in temperatures. Over time this could lead to a break in the circuitry and result in system failure.
Leaving the computer on all the time puts excess wear on the mechanical components (the hard drive spindle motor and cooling fans).
Best compromise. First user in the morning turns it on; last user turns it off.
We leave our desktops on all the time allowing for scheduled utility tasks to run during overnight hours. We also restart the systems (to flush the RAM and reset the operating system) on a regular basis and routinely remove the case covers to clean out any dust that may have accumulated, especially around the fans and screens.
#3 -- Stop Popups!
Never click inside the window of a popup. Instead, close it by clicking on the X in the upper right corner. Many people are fooled into installing spyware applications by popups that promise to clean their system. If you receive a message saying it can help, assume it’s spyware and don’t click!
About the author:
Sharron Senter is co-founder of http://www.VisitingGeeks.com- an on site computer repair, security and networking company serving north of Boston, Southern NH and Maine. Visiting Geeks’ technicians are crackerjacks at squashing viruses, popups and securing and making computers perform faster. Learn more about Sharron at http://www.SharronSenter.com
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